Wham!'s 30th anniversary to be celebrated with new George Michael single (and possible reunion show)
It's been nearly 30 years to the day that Wham! (always with the exclamation point) entered the UK charts. (Pop quiz: Can anyone name the song that hit on June 29, 1982? The answer at the end of my tale.)
To mark the anniversary, George Michael says he'll release a new single on the very same day. And -- get this -- sources say Michael and former partner Andrew Ridgeley could be planning a one-night-only reunion show.
"Things are still in the early stages but everybody is getting really excited about it," a source told one British paper.
But first, the music. The new single is called ... let's have George explain it...
"To celebrate and commemorate those 30 wonderful years I am releasing my most recent song, White Light, to radio on the exact anniversary of that chart date," Michael says on his official website. "Although I know the music industry tradition on such occasions is to list the hundreds of millions of albums sold, the number of records broken and awards received over all those years, I would simply like to say thank you."
"Most of my fans realise that I dreamed of a career as a singer/songwriter from an early age, but never in my wildest imaginings could I have known that I would still be here thirty years later, healthy, happy, and feeling that I still have so much more music to give. It is miraculous in so many ways. Fate has been so kind to me, as have the millions of people that that have bought records and come to see me play year after year since 1982."
"I am truly blessed, and White Light is my thank you to everybody who has been a part of my success. And I mean everybody, including the press!! Long may it continue."
Now back to the reunion. Well, that's all we really know -- the rumors. Wham! split up back in 1986 and had a few misfires on reunions over the years, including a 2006 gig at Wembley Stadium that fell apart at the last minute.
So will it work out this time? The UK's Daily Mail and Mirror have some fun anonymous quotes: "George and Andrew have often said their 'Club Tropicana' days are well behind them," the source said. "But seeing as their anniversary coincides with George releasing new material, it's one of those 'now or never' moments. They probably won't do a long tour or release new material like Take That but they do want to commemorate the event with a big gig ... and an even bigger party afterwards! Things are still in the early stages but everybody is getting really excited about it."
The UK's Telegraph, which reported the rumors, says Ridgeley continues to enjoy a life outside the limelight, married to Bananarama singer Keren Woodward.
Don't make it a cruel, cruel summer, Andrew. Let's have a one-off show for the ages.
(Oh, the answer to the trivia question: Wham Rap was the duo's first big hit.)